Democracy Now! daily radio broadcast for Thursday, August 20, 1998
Future of Nigeria's Military Rule Discussed
Would-be political parties convened yesterday to discuss guidelines for elections to end military rule in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation. Military ruler General Abdulsalam Abubakar has been in a series of meetings with military folks and others trying to convince them that he is committed to restoring civilian rule. But what has really changed?
Rebellion in Congo
The rebellion in the Democratic Republic of Congo is spiraling into what could become a regional disaster, as Zimbabwe and Angola pledge to send in guns and soldiers to save Laurent Kabila’s beleaguered regime. Today the rebels, who charge Kabila with corruption and human rights abuses, offered to enter into cease-fire negotiations, even as they said they had defeated government defenders about 90 miles outside the capital.
UN Probe of Michigan Prisons
Recently the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women was denied access to three prisons accused of sexual misconduct against its inmates. Governor John Engler of Michigan claims the federal government has filed a “baseless lawsuit in charging his state with violating women s rights”. Engler claims the UN probe is politically motivated. But the special Rapporteur is gathering information for a report that is slated for release at the end of the year. She has already visited prisons in several other states.